Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

If you could build one grand display, what would it look like?

I'm cleaning out my basement so I can re-build shelves and paint the walls, so I have to move all the Lava.  I figured while I was moving stuff around, I might as well open up some of the boxes.  Then I figured, "well, heck, I've got the boxes open, I might as well fire up some lamps I haven't displayed in a while!"  I'm rapidly running out of space to display the lamps!!!

So now I'm wondering what kind of display I can build so I can have all 250-ish lamps out at once.  (Or at least half of them!)  If you could design and build one grand display, what would it look like?  Shelves flat against the wall?  Kind of a staircase design?  A book case kind of deal?  What? 

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i'd build something similar to what lamphead has.  my main concern would be how to hide the wires.

I think book cases would be the easiest.

Drill holes in the back of the book cases for the cords to go through so they will not be seen.

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Marcel, I LOVE that display!!!  (I had to go back and retype that four times - I was so excited, I kept making typos!)

If you have several lamps on a bookcase shelf you might want to consider adding ventilation.  I have a setup like that and sometimes there are overheating issues, especially with the 32 oz globes.

I would imagine that would be a real problem with a closed-back display.  I had a bunch of lamps on an Ikea shelf in my old apartment that did fine.  (I can't believe I didn't burn the place down as I had all of the lamps on one circuit!)

Hubby and I will be building a small house at our retirement property in a few years.  I've already said I want a Lava room so get ready for a challenge when designing the electrical panel!  :)

I'm thinking a combination of Lamphead's wall of Lava and Marcel's single shelves for the special ones.  Now how to decide which lamps go where!  Maybe Marcel's shelves for the Mathmos lamps...

I agree on LampHead-style bookcases, with individual shelves for special ones. My advice, if you're building a house and making a room just for lava, is to build a narrow hallway behind all walls which have lamp displays. Your power goes there. They sell outlet strips in the form of a rigid metal channel with an outlet every foot or so; what you do is, for each horizontal row, install two of these strips at shelf level. Every foot, there are two outlets. Then, every 7" or so, have a hole at the lower edge of the shelf. This kills cord clutter, as once the cords are threaded through the holes, you wind them back up like a new lamp, tie with a rubber band, and plug into the nearest outlet. You could even put a separate switch for each horizontal row. Or, the back of the wall could face a normal hallway with removable wall sections or cabinet-like doors.

For the wall for special lamps: no hallway is needed. Build your wall about 8-10" out from the actual wall, and install rectangular boxes recessed into it, so the front surface is flat. Each cubby has a hole in the bottom, near the back. Put your lamp in, feed the cord through. Now, have a section of wall along the baseboard removable, and mount a couple of those same metal channel outlet strips along the wall, a foot or so off the floor. Plug in the cords you find dangling, and replace the access panel.

You could also do this in some rooms or hallways: build a recessed box into a wall just about anywhere. At the back, provide a small 'well,' with an outlet in it, which allows you to hide the folded-up cord down and behind the lamp.

I agree with Keith: make sure the main lava room has good ventilation, or a small AC unit.

    You can hide the cords in several different ways, Jonas mentions some nice suggestions. I was always going to cover my cords with a piece of trim wood but they never really bothered me the way I have them laid out. On the sides of my shelves is a rats nest of wires but they are hidden by a cloth panel. My intention was to replace the cloth with a wood door panel but never got around to it. Each shelf has its own power strip which is plugged into a master power strip with a installed dimmer. Each shelf half has its own 20 amp outlet to prevent overload.

  The big problem is the heat generated by the lamps, it will get hot very quickly when you have just 30 or so lamps running. You will need some type of vent to exhaust and overcome the heat, its a bigger problem than I thought it would be. They will overheat quickly which is why I added the dimmer strips.

   Since you have the option, I would go with custom built over store bought units. I did manage to find some nice glass and metal units that are perfect height but I dont see them available anymore. On these I just ran the cords down the back brace to hide them but you still end up with a rats nest underneath.

   Custom...

 Store bought racks...

 

   

That was my thought too Jonas - to have the hidden compartment for the strip outlets and to hide the wires.  My hubby wants me to have the Lava room up in the loft, but I think that it'll be too difficult to control the temp up there.  His idea was ceiling fans, but even with a small A/C unit, it might be kind of dicey. 

Can you imagine what the Amish cabinet builders will think when I try to explain what I want?  LOL!  :)

I love the floor display, but it would definitely take up too much space. Anyone else want to chime in?
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Ah look, Mr. Tim Haggerty... I haven't seen this photo in a while lol. I agree, while that would look awesome, it definitely would take up a lot of space. 

I have found that I prefer my lamps "front and center", but I don't have that option any more.   I really enjoyed my big bulky TV that I could put lamps on!  Kind of hard to balance a Lava Lamp on a flat screen TV, lol

100_4876 P

Love the baby pics!

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